Harris' Broadcast Division has laid off approximately 85 people, or 9 % of the division. Thirty of those positions were part-time.
Harris characterized the lost positions as "administrative". A spokeswoman said no radio salespeople were let go, although she could not say whether radio equipment manufacturing personnel (other than those located in Quincy, Ill.) were affected by the cuts, which affected all five Harris broadcast locations: Mason, Ohio; Quincy, Ill.; Littleton, Mass, and Sunnyvale and Vista, Calif.
No manufacturing jobs were lost at the Quincy plant, said the spokeswoman.
Harris said the trimming was necessary to align its staff levels with current business requirements.
The company recently lowered its fiscal 2003 earnings-per-share forecast and reported "weaker than expected" results in its broadcast business from postponed DTV equipment purchases. It said then that a 17 % decline in first-quarter sales for its Broadcast Communications segment reduced first-quarter operating income to $1.9 million, compared to the prior year's $7.5 million.
"Many of the smaller-market (TV) broadcasters are installing the minimum amount of equipment necessary to temporarily comply with the FCC's digital conversion mandate, thereby delaying purchases of more expensive systems that eventually will be required," Harris stated at the time.
The division's last personnel cutback was in 2000. Approximately 950 people work in the broadcast division.